Optimal control problems appear frequently in chemical reactor design. We study the application of a strategy belonging to the class known as gradient methods in function space to solve such problems by discretization of the function space and an iterative conjugate gradient algorithm. The algorithm is applied to a plug flow reactor model with various levels of reaction mechanism complexities. The examples, in which the properties of the algorithm are examined in detail, range from the control of the first-order reaction model of a hexane isomerization mechanism to the control of oscillation patterns and mechanistic re-routing in the oscillatory Belouzov-Zhabotinski reaction. The algorithm is successful in treating these highly nonlinear systems and hence provides a prospect of solving other complicated nonlinear optimal reactor control problems.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Physical and Theoretical Chemistry